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Total 28 verses in Chapter 16: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23 | 24 | 25 | 26 | 27 | 28 |
28 Verily I say unto you, There be some standing here, which shall not taste of death, till they see the Son of man coming in his kingdom.
28 Verse 28. There be some-which shall not taste of death] This

verse seems to confirm the above explanation, as our Lord

evidently speaks of the establishment of the Christian Church

after the day of pentecost, and its final triumph after the

destruction of the Jewish polity; as if he had said, "Some of you,

my disciples, shall continue to live until these things take

place." The destruction of Jerusalem, and the Jewish economy,

which our Lord here predicts, took place about forty-three years

after this: and some of the persons now with him doubtless

survived that period, and witnessed the extension of the Messiah's

kingdom; and our Lord told them these things before, that when

they came to pass they might be confirmed in the faith, and expect

an exact fulfilment of all the other promises and prophecies which

concerned the extension and support of the kingdom of Christ.

To his kingdom, or in his kingdom. Instead of βασιλεια,

kingdom, four MSS., later Syriac, Coptic, Ethiopic, Saxon, and one

copy of the Itala, with several of the primitive fathers, read

δοξη, glory: and to this is added, τουπατροςαυτου, of his

Father, by three MSS. and the versions mentioned before. This

makes the passage a little more conformable to the passage already

quoted from Daniel; and it must appear, very clearly, that the

whole passage speaks not of a future judgment, but of the

destruction of the Jewish polity, and the glorious spread of

Christianity in the earth, by the preaching of Christ crucified by

the apostles and their immediate successors in the Christian


1. THE disciples, by being constantly with their Master, were

not only guarded against error, but were taught the whole truth:

we should neglect no opportunity of waiting upon God; while Jesus

continues to teach, our ear and heart should be open to receive

his instructions. That what we have already received may be

effectual, we must continue to hear and pray on. Let us beware of

the error of the Pharisees! They minded only external

performances, and those things by which they might acquire esteem

and reputation among men; thus, humility and love, the very soul

of religion, were neglected by them: they had their reward-the

approbation of those who were as destitute of vital religion as

themselves. Let us beware also of the error of the Sadducees,

who, believing no other felicity but what depended on the good

things of this world, became the flatterers and slaves of those

who could bestow them, and so, like the Pharisees, had their

portion only in this life. All false religions and false

principles conduct to the same end, however contrary they appear

to each other. No two sects could be more opposed to each other

than the Sadducees and Pharisees, yet their doctrines lead to the

same end-they are both wedded to this world, and separated from

God in the next.

2. From the circumstance mentioned in the conclusion of this

chapter, we may easily see the nature of the kingdom and reign of

Christ: it is truly spiritual and Divine; having for its object

the present holiness and future happiness of mankind. Worldly

pomp, as well as worldly maxims, were to be excluded from it.

Christianity forbids all worldly expectations, and promises

blessedness to those alone who bear the cross, leading a life of

mortification and self-denial. Jesus Christ has left us an

example that we should follow his steps. How did he live?-What

views did he entertain?-In what light did he view worldly pomp and

splendour? These are questions which the most superficial reader

may, without difficulty, answer to his immediate conviction. And

has not Christ said that the disciple is not ABOVE the Master? If

HE humbled himself, how can he look upon those who, professing

faith in his name, are conformed to the world and mind earthly

things? These disciples affect to be above their Lord; and as

they neither bear his cross, nor follow him in the regeneration,

they must look for another heaven than that in which he sits at

the right hand of God. This is an awful subject; but how few of

those called Christians lay it to heart!

3. The term CHURCH in Greek εκκλησια, occurs for the first time

in .

The word simply means an assembly or congregation, the nature of

which is to be understood from connecting circumstances; for the

word εκκλησια, as well as the terms congregation and assembly,

may be applied to any concourse of people, good or bad; gathered

together for lawful or unlawful purposes. Hence, it is used,


for the mob, or confused rabble, gathered together against Paul,

εκκλησιασυγκεχυμενη, which the town-clerk distinguished,


from a lawful assembly, εννομωεκκλεσια. The Greek word εκκλησια

seems to be derived from εκκαλεω, to call out of, or from, i.e.

an assembly gathered out of a multitude; and must have some other

word joined to it, to determine its nature: viz. the Church of

God; the congregation collected by God, and devoted to his

service. The Church of Christ: the whole company of Christians

wheresoever found; because, by the preaching of the Gospel, they

are called out of the spirit and maxims of the world, to live

according to the precepts of the Christian religion. This is

sometimes called the Catholic or universal Church, because

constituted of all the professors of Christianity in the world, to

whatever sects or parties they may belong: and hence the

absurdity of applying the term Catholic, which signifies universal,

to that very small portion of it, the Church of Rome. In

primitive times, before Christians had any stated buildings, they

worshipped in private houses; the people that had been converted

to God meeting together in some one dwelling-house of a

fellow-convert, more convenient and capacious than the rest; hence

the Church that was in the house of Aquila and Priscilla,

, and ,

and the Church that was in the house of Nymphas, .

Now, as these houses were dedicated to the worship of God, each

was termed κυριουοικος kuriou oikos, the house of the Lord;

which word, in process of time, became contracted into κυριοικ

kurioik, and κυριακη, kuriake; and hence the kirk of our

northern neighbours, and [Anglo-Saxon] kirik of our Saxon

ancestors, from which, by corruption, changing the hard Saxon c

into ch, we have made the word church. This term, though it be

generally used to signify the people worshipping in a particular

place, yet by a metonymy, the container being put for the

contained, we apply it, as it was originally, to the building

which contains the worshipping people.

In the proper use of this word there can be no such thing as THE

church, exclusively; there may be A church, and the CHURCHES,

signifying a particular congregation, or the different assemblies

of religious people: and hence, the Church of Rome, by applying it

exclusively to itself, abuses the term, and acts as ridiculously

as it does absurdly. Church is very properly defined in the 19th

article of the Church of England, to be "a congregation of

faithful men, in the which the pure word of God is preached, and

the sacraments duly administered, according to Christ's ordinance."